Saturday, July 5, 2014

Fireworks Air Pollution Spikes in USA Post 4th of July

The animation below shows the accumulation of fine particulate (PM2.5) after Independence Day fireworks set off on the night of July 4. In addition to the day long pollution from the barbeque grills and holiday car trips.
The timeline begins in the early hours of July 5, with orange and red colored unhealthy levels continuing through the still night. Many of these metro areas in the Midwest, East and Southeast recently had their air basins flushed clean by winds or rain.


Air Quality Advisory Issued For Smoke and Ozone For July 4 Through July 5 Due to Fireworks
- Clark County Department of Air Quality (DAQ) is issuing an advisory that will be in effect from Friday, July 4, through Saturday, July 5, for potentially elevated levels of smoke and ozone over the Independence Day holiday due to local fireworks.  Air Quality officials say smoke is made of small dust particles and other pollutants that can aggravate respiratory diseases and contribute to ground-level ozone formation.
Fireworks Caused Louisville to Exceed Air Pollution Standards on July 4 For First Time Since 2010
- “Just by the nature of how the standard works, you’d see a spike, you could clearly see a lot of PM in the air, on our monitoring data around 9, 10, 11:00, 12:00, 1:00, 2:00,” he said. “And then it dissipates as people go to bed and they stop shooting fireworks off.” 
Fireworks' 'recreational pollution' makes environmentalists fume
- Fourth of July on the Washington Mall, New York Harbor and countless other cities and towns throughout the US...
... the British medical journal The Lancet points out the "great consequences for health, especially in periods with extremely high particulate matter less than PM2.5 in diameter."
For all their dazzling geometry and stirring booms and crackles, fireworks deliver a smorgasbord of grim chemicals into the skies above.
Perchlorate, the chief propellant, contaminates the ground and water below. It inhibits the thyroid's absorption of iodine...
That brilliant green blossoming above is created with barium nitrate, which is not only radioactive and poisonous...
 Blues are made with copper compounds like polychlorinated dioxins...
The brilliant whites sparkling above are most likely brought courtesy of aluminum compounds, which also bioaccumulate in any living thing below...
 Reds can come from lithium, which is toxic and creates irritating fumes when burned, or strontium...
Add to the palette painting the night sky antimony, rubidium, arsenic, magnesium, potassium nitrate and lead, each producing its twist or effect...
There are also the gaseous by products to be considered. Studies have found spikes in free radical nitric oxide, the highly toxic nitrogen dioxide and acid rainmaker sulfur dioxide following firework shows. Another study found that the ultraviolet light emitted by the flashing light triggers a burst in ozone levels.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

July 1 Air in America

Just in time for its Independence Day, America celebrates its tragic dependence on fossil fuel polluted air.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Ozone and Particulate Air Pollution in Summertime America 2014

If the map is colored green it is either healthy, slightly less than unhealthy, or there is no instruments  measuring air pollution in the area.
Yellow, orange, and red signify unhealthy air.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

California's Central Valley Ozone PM2.5

California's Central Valley, a.k.a. The Salad Bowl of the World, also collects and generates enormous  amounts of unhealthy ozone and fine particulate pollution.
This AIRNow animated map shows a one days cycle of these dangerous pollutants.
Just left-of-center near the bottom of the map and just above Los Angeles is the southern edge of the Central Valley.
Much of the air entering the valley began as relatively fresh sea air off of the Pacific. As the air traveled through San Fransisco and San Jose, it began picking up pollution from those metro areas then flowed to the bottom of the valley, accumulating more pollutants.The Valley's pollution then spills over the Tehachapi Mountains, the site of many wind turbines, into the high deserts north of Los Angeles.
This is a normal cycle of air mixing and pollution generation for this area

Ozone in US Cities

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Toxic Ozone and Fine Particle Air Pollution in US.

Below is an animated color coded map of ozone and fine particulate air pollution as it goes through its forecast cycle. Areas colored warmer than green signify unhealthy levels of listed pollutants.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

2014 Investigating Atmospheric Pollution Portland, Oregon USA.

2014: View of the sky and sun from Portland, Oregon USA.
This photo essay is an attempt to illustrate aerosol pollution and the condition of our air, and atmosphere. Those outdoor 'Klodachrome colors' of yesteryear are a relic of the past in more ways than one.

Two photos are of the sky and sun:
An afternoon view looking west.

Another afternoon view looking west.

Reflections on water of the sky and sun:
In this view of a small barrel of rainwater, the sun and every reflective surface has a washed out and a murky white look to it. Note, next to the sun, the color spectrum is weighted towards violet.

 A puddle of fresh rainwater on an asphalt playground at a school yard. The water is clear and shallow but the sun is a washed out white glare spot. Note, next to the sun, the color spectrum is weighted towards violet. Does this indicate the composition of the atmosphere?

For comparison photos of sun glare in the American West and Southwest:

A turtle swimming on the surface of a pond in a City maintained public park in Santa Barbara, California, 2012.

Afternoon sun looking west in Santa Barbara, California, 2010.

And snow melt puddle in Flagstaff, Arizona, 2013.
Particulate laden sky, Sunrise, Portland, Oregon, 2014.
Downtown Portland, Oregon, 2014.
Downtown Portland, Oregon, 2014.
Street scene, setting sun, Portland, Oregon, 2014.
Setting sun over asphalt parking lot, Portland, Oregon, 2014.
Aviation jet trails, mostly commercial, Portland, OR, 2014.
Particulate laden sky and aviation jet trails, mostly commercial, Portland, OR, 2014.
Atmospheric moisture and particulate, Portland, OR, 2014

Telephoto lenses of hundreds of mm in focal length often make distant objects appear large. These photos were taken with a wide angle lens, with focal length of 6.30 - 31.5 mm.
Optical refraction and distortion from atmospheric pollution causes the sun to appear larger than it really is. Any shifts in the reflected color spectrum may hint at just whats up there. Because the sun no longer appears golden or yellow, and the sky is seldom a deep "sky" blue.
Could this sun size anomaly also affect our climate and weather patterns?
This photo essayist thinks it's worth considering.

For more photos go to: Atmosphere West USA

Photos by DT Lange: (C) 2014